Well, it seems that my blog is almost exclusively about food. Oh, well. So be it.

Tonight, as I do most Sundays in the winter, I roasted a chicken for dinner. I thought I’d share my recipe, just in case you might be inclined to do the same. It really is delicious. I even added the recipe for homemade gravy (is there any other kind?).

Apple-Roasted Chicken with Gravy

  • 1 roasting chicken (4-7 pounds)
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, quartered
  • olive oil
  • Cajun seasoning (I get mine from Penzey’s)
  • 4 slices bacon
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 cups chicken stock or broth
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup apple cider
  • 1/2 cup 1% low-fat milk
  • Poultry seasoning, salt, and pepper

Rinse chicken well; pat dry. Spray lightly with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and cajun seasoning (add as much or as little as you’d like). Stuff cavity with quartered apple.

Pour broth and enough water to equal 3 cups liquid into the bottom of the pan. Place chicken on a rack coated with cooking spray; place rack in a shallow roasting pan. Drape bacon slices over breast of chicken, being careful not to cover up the pop-up timer if there’s one stuck in there.

Bake at 350° for 1.5 hours or until thermometer reaches 160° in meatiest part if thigh (or until the pop-up timer, uh, pops up). Remove bacon slices (eat them if you want – they turn out amazingly crisp and delicious). Place chicken on a platter. Cover loosely with foil; let stand 10 minutes (or 20 minutes, or however long it takes you to get everything else ready for dinner. Don’t worry; it will still be hot when you get around to carving it).

Pour 2 cups cooking liquid from pan (add water if you don’t have enough) into a zip-top plastic bag (you will probably have to put it in a bowl first, then the bag, unless you are incredibly dexterous, which I am not). Snip off 1 corner of bag; drain liquid into measuring cup, reserving 1 1/2 cup of broth, and stopping before the fat layer reaches the opening. Drain fat layer into another bowl, reserving 2 tablespoons. Discard remaining fat.

Combine reserved fat and flour in a medium saucepan over medium heat, and stir until smooth. Stir in reserved broth, cider, and milk, and bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered 3 minutes, stirring constantly until thick and bubbly. Season as you’d like, with poultry seasoning, salt, and pepper.

Oh, so what about the “joy” and “peril”? Well, the joy is of course just eating the scrumptious bird. The peril is that your hair smells like chicken for the rest of the night.